Friday 31 March 2017

A parliamentary forum will today shed light on the deadly cost of disability discrimination in the NSW health system and what can be done to prevent cracks in disability health from widening.

NSW Council for Intellectual Disability spokesperson Aine Healy said current and planned changes to disability services, including the roll out of the National Disability Insurance Scheme, meant tackling discrimination and the lack of adequate services in the health system was now an urgent priority.

“With the transfer of Ageing, Disability and Home Care services to the non-government sector and the roll out of the NDIS, vital health services currently funded by the NSW Government are at risk of being lost,” Ms Healy said.

“The future of essential services, such a clinic that ensures people with intellectual disability have adequate nutrition and can avoid dying due to swallowing impairments, remain unknown. Specialist psychiatrist visits for people with intellectual disability in regional NSW that make sure mental health issues are properly treated are also yet to be safeguarded - the list goes on.”

Progress needs to be made to ensure people with intellectual disability can access health services that meet their needs. Right now, the NSW Government has an opportunity to strengthen existing services and show that they are committed to reducing the number of preventable deaths in NSW.

“With recent research finding 38 percent of deaths of people with intellectual disability in NSW are preventable these services must be protected, there is no room for error,” Ms Healy said.

Who: Minister for Disability Services, Hon Raymond Williams, Shadow Minister for Disability Services, Hon Sophie Cotsis, Professor Julian Trollor, NSW Council for Intellectual Disability Chair Michael Sullivan, as well as other people with intellectual disability, their families and carers, who will talk about their first-hand experience of NSW hospitals and health services.

What: Parliamentary Forum to End Deadly Disability Discrimination

When: Speakers will be available for media interviews from 11.40am, before the forum commences at 12noon, and at the conclusion of the event at 1pm.

Where: Preston Stanley Room, NSW Parliament House

For more information or to organise an interview please contact Angus Hohenboken on 0447313205 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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